Have you ever put in the newest model of Mackerelmedia Fish? No, not Macromedia Flash. Mackerelmedia Fish. The piscine wealthy media plugin, created by experimental recreation designer Nathalie Lawhead, utilized in tasks just like the hacking instrument Haxatron 2000. A relic of an period the place social media hadn’t eaten the web, amateurish weirdness was the norm, and visiting an internet site would possibly contain clicking by way of an limitless sequence of arcane set up screens. The web site continues to be on-line, however for those who click on the improper hyperlink, you could be eaten by a grue.
Lawhead, identified for projects like Tetrageddon Video games and All the things Is Going To Be OK, explains just a little extra about Mackerelmedia Fish on her blog. It’s a brief and surreal recreation about digital archaeology, loss, and that feeling of looking by way of a once-lively vacation spot that’s slowly falling aside. The web page is a pure dose of nostalgia, however the sort that’s melancholy quite than comforting — like visiting your previous hometown and discovering all its retailer home windows boarded up.
Relatively than purely simulating software program within the vein of old-internet recreation Hypnospace Outlaw, Mackerelmedia Fish is framed by fourth-wall-breaking prose and a narrative that blends a “actual” desktop with journey recreation conventions. You’ll play a part of the sport in a web page listing and befriend a link-eating rodent. “The purpose actually is about exploring a brief story that’s concerning the lack of digital historical past,” writes Lawhead.
You’ll be able to have enjoyable simply clicking across the web site, however as Lawhead notes, there are some clear mechanical objectives — and it’s value truly pushing ahead by way of the story, too. Your pc could find yourself with a brand new pal.